Website of the UK government

Please note that this website has a UK government accesskeys system.

Public services all in one place

Main menu

Tuesday, 18 January 2011

Cancellation of identity cards: information for card holders

The government has passed legislation cancelling identity cards for British Citizens. Identity cards that have already been issued will no longer be legal forms of identification from 21 January 2011.

What to do if you have an identity card

Under the new law, identity cards will cease to be valid legal documents for proving your identity, age or for travel in Europe after 21 January 2011. As the card will cease to be a legal document, if you have an identity card you should consider securely destroying it. If you choose to keep your identity card, you should store it in a safe and secure place.

No refunds will be given to holders of identity cards.

Identity card data

The personal details of everyone issued with an identity card which were recorded on the National Identity Register will be securely destroyed by 21 February 2011. This includes photograph and fingerprint biometrics.

Biometric residence permits for foreign nationals

This card shows your immigration status and is also a residence permit, but it can't be used as a travel document.

The card is given to people from outside the EEA. It will be given to you if you have permission to extend your stay in the UK. This might be because you are a student, or because of marriage or partnership.

Biometric residence permits have not been cancelled.

Provided by the Identity and Passport Service

Was this information useful?

Thinking about what you have just read, how useful did you find the information?
Thinking about what you have just read, how useful did you find the information?
500 character limit

Why are we asking for this information?

  • we want to hear what you think about the quality and usefulness of our pages
  • your comments will help us improve our pages
  • your comments will also help with the future development of Directgov
  • telling us what you think will help make sure we give you the very best service

Access keys